Perfect Waldorf Salad

by Oscar Tschirky


50g shelled walnuts, roughly chopped
50g raisins or sultanas, or 1 handful grapes (optional)
2 sharp green apples (eg, granny smiths)
1 lemon
2-3 celery sticks, or fewer, depending on taste
2 tbsp natural yoghurt, or creme fraiche (optional)
100g mayonnaise, preferably not made with olive oil
1 tsp dijon mustard, or to taste (optional)
Salt and black pepper
1 little gem lettuce, to serve (optional)
Walnut oil, to serve (optional)


Toast the walnuts in a dry frying pan until fragrant, then set aside to cool. Put the raisins in a small bowl and add enough boiling water just to cover; or cut the grapes in half, if using, and set aside.

Core the apples, then cut into matchsticks, put in a bowl and squeeze the lemon over the top. Peel and destring the celery, then thinly slice, add to the apple bowl and toss well.

Whisk the yoghurt or creme fraiche, if using, into the mayonnaise, then stir in the mustard and season to taste. Drain the raisins and add to the apple and celery (or add the grapes), and add the walnuts to the bowl, too. Pour the dressing over the top and toss to coat.

Separate the little gem into individual leaves and use these to line a salad dish. Scoop the salad mix into the middle, finish with a drizzle of walnut oil if, using, and serve.

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